Arrests and Suspensions Follow Pro-Palestinian Protests at American Universities

Pro-Palestinian encampments have emerged on over a dozen American college campuses, including New York University (NYU), Yale University, and Columbia University, leading to arrests and suspensions of participating students.

At NYU on Monday night, the NYPD arrested over 100 protesters, including faculty members, who formed a human chain to shield students at an encampment outside the Stern School of Business. Charges of trespassing were leveled against students involved.

According to an NYU graduate student who requested anonymity due to university concerns, the situation turned violent as police allegedly threw lawn furniture. The student noted that similar encampments proliferated following Columbia University’s invitation to law enforcement onto its campus, calling it a precedent. The NYU encampment has since been dismantled by authorities.

Meanwhile, antiwar protesters have established encampments at other universities like UC Berkeley, UNC Chapel Hill, Washington University in Saint Louis, University of Michigan, The New School, MIT, Emerson College, Tufts University, University of Pittsburgh, University of Rochester, University of Minnesota, and University of Maryland.

The presence of these encampments has left some Jewish students feeling unsafe on campus, prompting a few to organize smaller counter-protests. However, other Jewish students are actively participating in the protest movement, with organizers dismissing allegations of antisemitism.

The protesters’ primary demand is university divestment from companies profiting from the Israeli occupation, citing urgency in their cause.